Why Is Professional Development Important?

Have you heard the infamous saying, “Change begins at the end of your comfort zone,” and wondered what it meant? Growth and change are vital to becoming the best version of yourself. Professional development is a large part of this and can positively impact your overall happiness. Professional growth begins in the classroom and extends into your future career and personal life, meaning it is essential that you are adaptable. As a student and beyond in your career, you are constantly challenged to gain new skills, knowledge, and experience that aid your professional development. Why is professional development important (1)

WVJC is here to help you understand the importance of professional development and guide you along your academic journey. Continue reading to learn more!

Growth As A Student

A student’s primary focus during their educational journey is gaining the valuable knowledge, skills, and experience they need to be successful in their future career. Investing time in your education will give you the expertise you need to grow professionally. Throughout your time as a WVJC student, every lecture, lab, and clinical experience is an opportunity for intellectual growth.

Additionally, stepping outside of your comfort zone when training for your new career is of the utmost importance. Hands-on lab and clinical experiences allow you to practice real-world skills in a controlled, instructor-led environment, which can help you gain confidence in your skills. 

Developing interpersonal relationships with peers, professors, and mentors throughout your education is also an excellent way to receive support. Your professional network is a great resource for developing connections with like-minded individuals in your field and could potentially lead to recommendations and job opportunities. 

WVJC students also benefit from career management services throughout their education. These services are designed to support students during their time as  WVJC students through externship placement, interview preparation, resume writing assistance, and more. Career services also extend beyond graduation, allowing WVJC alums continued assistance with future job placement, career fairs, and refresher courses* at WVJC as their industry evolves. 

Development As A Professional

The transition from student to professional marks the start of a new chapter in your life. Once you have completed your education at WVJC, you are prepared to begin your new career. However, your learning is not complete just because you received your degree or diploma. As a working professional, it is crucial that you commit to a lifetime of learning new skills and pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone

Many industries, including healthcare, constantly change as technology advances and new techniques arise. Because of this, it is essential that you stay up-to-date with the latest advancements in your field. One way to do this is through furthering your education through a bachelor’s degree and beyond, industry-specific online courses, or professional development workshops to gain specific skills. 

As you prepare to enter the workforce, your professional network can be a wonderful resource to help you navigate the job searching process. The connections you make during your education can help set you up for professional success through job recommendations or potential job opportunities. For example, make a positive impression on the staff of your externship location. They may offer you a position upon graduation or connect you to someone within their network for an opportunity. Another way you can utilize your network for professional development is to ask for constructive feedback from your industry experts in your network and then follow their advice. 

Finally, in order to achieve success, it is important to consider your goals. As you begin preparing for your career, take time to set SMART career goals. This method can help you determine your goals and the steps to achieve them. The WVJC career services department can also assist you with personalized career planning to help you get on the right track toward your goals. 

Start Your Journey at WVJC!

Get on the path to your dream career with the help of WVJC! Our admissions, academic, and career service teams are here to help guide you every step of the way. Get started today by requesting information!

*Career Management Services are subject to specific conditions and requirements and to continued campus operations. Please see the campus catalog for complete details.